Picture this: It's a hot August evening. After my run, I stop at the mailbox to pick up the day's mail. As I walk to the house, sweat drips from my forehead onto the mail as I read it. It must be 90 degrees, 90 percent humidity. I swat mosquitoes off my neck. The rumble of a distant summer thunderstorm echoes on the horizon.
I walk into the house and my beautiful wife is waiting for me with a towel and a cool glass of iced-tea. She is resplendent as the ceiling fan gently caresses the gauzy fabric of her summer dress. It's like I've walked into a Faulkner novel.
"What's in the mail?" she asks.
"Oh, nothing," I reply. "The usual - bills, a couple of magazines and... what's this? Why, it's the FIRST F-ING HOLIDAY CATALOG OF THE SEASON!"
That's right. Hallmark cards gets the award for the first holiday season mailing of 2009. Two weeks before Labor Day and the good folks at Hallmark are shilling their greeting cards.
I'm sure some marketing and sales wizards did the calculus that says if they get out there early, it means more business. But I can assure you, Hallmark, that with me you may have jumped the gun juuuust a skosh.
What merchant will be the first to solicit you with a holiday catalog, in a crass and desperate attempt to salvage what will no doubt be the worst holiday selling season since... last year?
Feel free to post them here.